Frenectomy AKA tongue tie procedure

nittanyfan333

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Aug 30, 2010
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Last Wednesday (almost 2 weeks ago) my 2 and a half month old daughter Went under the knife. I am effort to help spread the word about this procedure, thought I’d share my experience.

since she was born, she has not been a good eater. It got to the point that my wife was about to throw in the breastfeeding towel at almost 3 months where she breastfed our son till a year. Already my wife had 4 blocked ducts and mastitis twice because the baby wouldn’t empty her. So we finally had an appointment with a lactation consultant. She immediately pointed out that Veronica was tongue AND lip tied, and it caused a cascading affect on her neck, upper back and shoulder muscles causing her to be incredibly tense which caused her to never be relaxed enough to eat properly. Laundry list of issues caused by the ties. She prescribed a pretty intensive regimen of stretching of her neck, arms, upper back and cheeks to help start to loosen things up.

I went to work the next day and happened to mention it to a friend and she told me about how her son had it but it wasn’t diagnosed till he was 7 then he had the procedure. After asking around some more, come to find out it’s a pretty common affliction and that more and more people were getting the frenectomy procedure done to fix it.

some of the side affects of an un-repaired tongue tie: dental issues, speech impediments, breathing issues (due to high pallet), stunted growth.... etc.

the procedure is very non-invasive. They take a laser and burn back the frenulum. The laser cauterizes the site 99% of the way to bleeding is very minimal, and there aren’t that many nerve endings in the frenulum so it’s relatively painless just uncomfortable for the baby. Plus at that age, kids are a tiny ball of HGH so recovery is pretty fast. Most of the time they catch this within the first month or so and take care of it really early because the longer they wait the longer bad feeding technique gets cemented in the baby which can cause to poor weight gain and development. We talked to Vero’s pediatrician and he said their policy is that if it doesn’t cause issues than they leave it alone to hopefully naturally stretch out. The problem is at that age these kids are freaking ravenous so they will eat through it regardless. What we saw was that she would eat for 5 minutes every dang hour including through the night. Yes, she woke up every hour through the night to eat. It was a nightmare....

so day of, we took her in for the dentist to confirm that diagnosis. She did. We then took Vero to the masseuse to get her to relax pre-procedure. From there, they escorted wife and I into 1 room and took Veronica into another. Literally 3 minutes later they brought her back and told us she did great (she wasn’t crying at all). She latched right away and nursed.

now the fun began. Every 4 hours she needed her sites stretched to avoid it growing back together. Want to talk about feeing like a terrible parent? I’m talking about pushing her tongue down her throat then pulling her upper lip to her nose as far as it would go. Every. Four. Hours. Plus, the baby needs to re-learn how to eat properly. She had been chomping at the breast with her gums because she couldn’t use her tongue properly and her upper lip wouldn’t slow her mouth to open wide enough. Luckily we got her 3 day and 1 week appointments before this COVID nonsense shut everything down, and she’s healing perfectly.



SO, takeaways:

- it’s a pretty common issue. We hadn’t heard of it before but it happens quite a bit. We asked our parents if either of us were tongue tied and the response was “what’s that?” I think it’s something that has always happened but as technology and understanding progresses it’s more understood.

- it’s also a pretty common procedure now, especially since they invented the laser.

- it really is pretty non-invasive. I was petrified about the words “surgery” and “my daughter” in the same sentence but in hindsight there was no reason to be concerned.

- the recovery process sucks but you HAVE to keep the long term in mind. We’re trying to avoid speech issues, growth issues and dental issues.

- it’s fairly inexpensive. It’s considered elective so insurance didn’t cover it until we met our deductible so we paid out of pocket. It’s 300$ per cut, so we paid 600$ (tongue and lip)


I share all of this, again, to help people understand that this is pretty common and the fix is very non-invasive. Had I known how common this was and how easy it was to fix I think we would have done the procedure from jump street instead of a few days of therapy.

I also share this for people to understand if their young kids are having eating issues this could be the issue. When the lactation consultant told us about it, it was the first we had heard about Veronica having this issue, even though the consultant said it was pretty bad and easily observed. Had she not said anything, wife probably would have given up on breastfeeding and Veronica would have started to gain weight much slower.

also, a testament to our lactation consultant. I thought they were people that basically said “here’s how you breast feed, here’s how you pump, good luck”. WAY wrong. Our consultant is worth her weight in gold. They’re constantly getting training on the newest info and techniques, and are VERY knowledgeable.

Again, just passing info. Feel free to share your stories.
 

Fac

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Jun 5, 2001
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Thanks for the information and good luck to you and your family.
 

jim cummings

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May 27, 2015
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We thought our daughter was tongue tied for about a month when her tongue would just stick out of her mouth constantly. Obviously not the case. Just a phase of sorts.

good luck
 
A

anon_xdc8rmuek44eq

Guest
Last Wednesday (almost 2 weeks ago) my 2 and a half month old daughter Went under the knife. I am effort to help spread the word about this procedure, thought I’d share my experience.

since she was born, she has not been a good eater. It got to the point that my wife was about to throw in the breastfeeding towel at almost 3 months where she breastfed our son till a year. Already my wife had 4 blocked ducts and mastitis twice because the baby wouldn’t empty her. So we finally had an appointment with a lactation consultant. She immediately pointed out that Veronica was tongue AND lip tied, and it caused a cascading affect on her neck, upper back and shoulder muscles causing her to be incredibly tense which caused her to never be relaxed enough to eat properly. Laundry list of issues caused by the ties. She prescribed a pretty intensive regimen of stretching of her neck, arms, upper back and cheeks to help start to loosen things up.

I went to work the next day and happened to mention it to a friend and she told me about how her son had it but it wasn’t diagnosed till he was 7 then he had the procedure. After asking around some more, come to find out it’s a pretty common affliction and that more and more people were getting the frenectomy procedure done to fix it.

some of the side affects of an un-repaired tongue tie: dental issues, speech impediments, breathing issues (due to high pallet), stunted growth.... etc.

the procedure is very non-invasive. They take a laser and burn back the frenulum. The laser cauterizes the site 99% of the way to bleeding is very minimal, and there aren’t that many nerve endings in the frenulum so it’s relatively painless just uncomfortable for the baby. Plus at that age, kids are a tiny ball of HGH so recovery is pretty fast. Most of the time they catch this within the first month or so and take care of it really early because the longer they wait the longer bad feeding technique gets cemented in the baby which can cause to poor weight gain and development. We talked to Vero’s pediatrician and he said their policy is that if it doesn’t cause issues than they leave it alone to hopefully naturally stretch out. The problem is at that age these kids are freaking ravenous so they will eat through it regardless. What we saw was that she would eat for 5 minutes every dang hour including through the night. Yes, she woke up every hour through the night to eat. It was a nightmare....

so day of, we took her in for the dentist to confirm that diagnosis. She did. We then took Vero to the masseuse to get her to relax pre-procedure. From there, they escorted wife and I into 1 room and took Veronica into another. Literally 3 minutes later they brought her back and told us she did great (she wasn’t crying at all). She latched right away and nursed.

now the fun began. Every 4 hours she needed her sites stretched to avoid it growing back together. Want to talk about feeing like a terrible parent? I’m talking about pushing her tongue down her throat then pulling her upper lip to her nose as far as it would go. Every. Four. Hours. Plus, the baby needs to re-learn how to eat properly. She had been chomping at the breast with her gums because she couldn’t use her tongue properly and her upper lip wouldn’t slow her mouth to open wide enough. Luckily we got her 3 day and 1 week appointments before this COVID nonsense shut everything down, and she’s healing perfectly.



SO, takeaways:

- it’s a pretty common issue. We hadn’t heard of it before but it happens quite a bit. We asked our parents if either of us were tongue tied and the response was “what’s that?” I think it’s something that has always happened but as technology and understanding progresses it’s more understood.

- it’s also a pretty common procedure now, especially since they invented the laser.

- it really is pretty non-invasive. I was petrified about the words “surgery” and “my daughter” in the same sentence but in hindsight there was no reason to be concerned.

- the recovery process sucks but you HAVE to keep the long term in mind. We’re trying to avoid speech issues, growth issues and dental issues.

- it’s fairly inexpensive. It’s considered elective so insurance didn’t cover it until we met our deductible so we paid out of pocket. It’s 300$ per cut, so we paid 600$ (tongue and lip)


I share all of this, again, to help people understand that this is pretty common and the fix is very non-invasive. Had I known how common this was and how easy it was to fix I think we would have done the procedure from jump street instead of a few days of therapy.

I also share this for people to understand if their young kids are having eating issues this could be the issue. When the lactation consultant told us about it, it was the first we had heard about Veronica having this issue, even though the consultant said it was pretty bad and easily observed. Had she not said anything, wife probably would have given up on breastfeeding and Veronica would have started to gain weight much slower.

also, a testament to our lactation consultant. I thought they were people that basically said “here’s how you breast feed, here’s how you pump, good luck”. WAY wrong. Our consultant is worth her weight in gold. They’re constantly getting training on the newest info and techniques, and are VERY knowledgeable.

Again, just passing info. Feel free to share your stories.

Thanks for sharing. We noticed at around 13-14 months our now three and a half year old (boy) was not picking up food and eating it. He would eat if fed, but wouldn't pick it up like my daughter did. So, at his check up we asked the doctor and he said it could be a food/texture sensitivity and to see a food therapist. She felt around his mouth and said he had a tongue tie, a lip tie, and a high palette. All possible contributors to the feeding himself. He also had about seven or eight ear infections to this point as well. Anyway, after two or three sessions of food therapy (where the therapist worked with him on feeding himself) he was over it. She mentioned surgery as an option, but said lip ties usually work themselves out (boys falling on their faces usually does the trick) and to 'wait and see' if the tongue tie bothers him before opting for a frenectomy. So, we waited, got tubes in his ears to fix the infection issue, and everything worked out. He's eating like a horse, has no hearing or speech issues, and we're happy. So, a little different experience than yours, but it's frustrating when your child won't eat. Happy things worked out for you and your family! I will say lactation consultants (with our daughter) were useless. They shame you if you can't breastfeed and we found pumping/bottle feed to be a much better solution.
 
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nittanyfan333

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Thanks for sharing. We noticed at around 13-14 months our now three and a half year old (boy) was not picking up food and eating it. He would eat if fed, but wouldn't pick it up like my daughter did. So, at his check up we asked the doctor and he said it could be a food/texture sensitivity and to see a food therapist. She felt around his mouth and said he had a tongue tie, a lip tie, and a high palette. All possible contributors to the feeding himself. He also had about seven or eight ear infections to this point as well. Anyway, after two or three sessions of food therapy (where the therapist worked with him on feeding himself) he was over it. She mentioned surgery as an option, but said lip ties usually work themselves out (boys falling on their faces usually does the trick) and to 'wait and see' if the tongue tie bothers him before opting for a frenectomy. So, we waited, got tubes in his ears to fix the infection issue, and everything worked out. He's eating like a horse, has no hearing or speech issues, and we're happy. So, a little different experience than yours, but it's frustrating when your child won't eat. Happy things worked out for you and your family! I will say lactation consultants (with our daughter) were useless. They shame you if you can't breastfeed and we found pumping/bottle feed to be a much better solution.

oh that’s great you figured it out! I think the worst part is not knowing what the issue is when there is an issue. I feel like when we figured out that there was an issue and what the issue was, it was the 1000lb gorilla off our chests.
 
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anon_xdc8rmuek44eq

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oh that’s great you figured it out! I think the worst part is not knowing what the issue is when there is an issue. I feel like when we figured out that there was an issue and what the issue was, it was the 1000lb gorilla off our chests.

Agreed. And we also noticed a massive uptick in his speech progression after the tubes went in the ears. We really had to rely on our doctor because our families did not have any experience with this kind of thing. It was almost more frustrating with my daughter; we tried breastfeeding when she first came home and kept a journal - we were feeding or attempting to feed about every 15-25 minutes the first day - it was grueling. Lactation specialist thinks she can solve all problems by smashing your kids face into a breast. Once we decided to get a medical grade pump and go that route, we got more sleep and the feedings went to every three to four hours, and wife could rest more since all I had to do was heat up a bag of milk. With our son, we didn't bother with breastfeeding at all - pumped from the jump and everyone was much happier.
 

nittanyfan333

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Agreed. And we also noticed a massive uptick in his speech progression after the tubes went in the ears. We really had to rely on our doctor because our families did not have any experience with this kind of thing. It was almost more frustrating with my daughter; we tried breastfeeding when she first came home and kept a journal - we were feeding or attempting to feed about every 15-25 minutes the first day - it was grueling. Lactation specialist thinks she can solve all problems by smashing your kids face into a breast. Once we decided to get a medical grade pump and go that route, we got more sleep and the feedings went to every three to four hours, and wife could rest more since all I had to do was heat up a bag of milk. With our son, we didn't bother with breastfeeding at all - pumped from the jump and everyone was much happier.

which like I said was the complete opposite experience we had with our lactation consultant. She immediately recognized the problem with the daughter, gave us a bunch of exercises to do that worked really well, and has since helped my wife with some new feeding techniques to re-train my daughter. I guess with everything though, you can get either end of the spectrum.

this is a perfect example though, for those with 1 kid that are gonna have more, or those gonna have their first. It’s so easy to compare both kids, even though you KNOW they’re different kids. I try so hard not to relate my daughter to my son but you fall back to what you know right? And what I knew when we had our daughter, was how my son was. “This worked for Daniel, it must work for Veronica right?” Nope! She didn’t eat well (he did), she HATED the swaddle (he lived in it), she loves to bounce on your shoulder he loved to be cradled in your arms.... completely different kids.

also a little hint... they change so fast that you get a new baby every 2-3 weeks. New likes, new dislikes, new comforts, new aggravations....
 
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